Doctor Who (1963–1989)
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Pyramids of Mars: Part Three 

The Doctor and Sarah try to destroy Sutekh's rocket but the Osiran's mental powers prove too great for them.

Director:

Paddy Russell

Writers:

Lewis Greifer (by) (as Stephen Harris), Robert Holmes (by) (as Stephen Harris)
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Cast

Episode complete credited cast:
Tom Baker ... Doctor Who
Elisabeth Sladen ... Sarah Jane Smith
Bernard Archard ... Marcus Scarman
Michael Sheard ... Laurence Scarman
Gabriel Woolf Gabriel Woolf ... Sutekh
Nick Burnell Nick Burnell ... Mummy
Melvyn Bedford Melvyn Bedford ... Mummy
Kevin Selway Kevin Selway ... Mummy
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Storyline

The mummies have nearly completed the Osiran missile destined for Mars to destroy the force field keeping Sutekh imprisoned. The Doctor and Sarah Jane find a way to deactivate part of the force field allowing them acquire a supply of gelignite from the poacher's storage room. Laurence tries to awaken his brother Marcus but Sutekh is in complete control. Posing as one of the mummies, the Doctor tries to place the explosive at the missile site but its ineffectual again thanks to Sutekh's mental powers. The Doctor decides it's time to visit Sutekh himself to distract him. There is a price to pay however. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

TV-Y | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

8 November 1975 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This episode takes place in England in 1911. See more »

Goofs

The Doctor chides Sarah Jane for throwing the box with the gelignite, stating that "Sweaty gelignite is highly unstable." Gelignite does not sweat, and is completely stable in the absence of a detonation source. See more »

Quotes

Doctor Who: [as Sarah finishes up disguising the Doctor as a mummy] Hurry up!
Sarah Jane Smith: I *am* hurrying!
Doctor Who: It doesn't have to be perfect. I shall mingle with the mummies, but I shan't linger.
Sarah Jane Smith: [checks the join between sleeve and hand] Okay, that'll have to do.
Doctor Who: How do I look?
Sarah Jane Smith: It must have been a nasty accident.
Doctor Who: Don't provoke me. Come on.
[as the Doctor turns to the door, Sarah grabs the rifle and ammo]
Doctor Who: And don't forget the rifle.
[Nonplussed, Sarah opens the door for the Doctor-mummy as he is now incapable, and they go out]
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Connections

Featured in Great TV Mistakes (2010) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Contender for best Doctor Who story ever - dark, thrilling and astonishingly high quality in all aspects!
25 November 2014 | by A_Kind_Of_CineMagicSee all my reviews

Review of all 4 episodes:

One of the finest Doctor Who stories of all time without doubt, this is pure genius throughout.

An Egyptologist, Marcus Scarman, enters an Egyptian tomb in 1911 and is taken over by a powerful being. This being, Sutekh was a God to the ancient Egyptians but it is later revealed that the Egyptian Gods including Sutekh and his brother Horus were actually ultra-powerful alien beings called Osirans. Sutekh is evil and exceptionally powerful. He wants to destroy all intelligent life he considers a threat and he was imprisoned thousands of years before by Horus and hundreds of other 'Gods' who united their powers to defeat him. Sutekh now begins to use Scarman to enable him to finally escape. The Doctor and Sarah arrive in 1911 England where Scarman is returning to his home. They must stop Sutekh or the Earth and many other worlds face destruction.

Sutekh is one of the best villains in Doctor Who. The power and evil shown by him is scarily impressive, The Doctor appears genuinely in fear of him and so is the audience. The sinister realisation of Sutekh himself is brilliant and Gabriel Woolf plays the part incredibly effectively. Those in his power also carry out some tremendously scary and effective scenes of evil. There are too many magnificent scenes to mention in this story and the effects are extremely well done, adding to the impact of many scenes. Just one great example is the smoke emitting from boots and gloves of a creepy black-clad villain as he kills a servant no longer considered useful.

The story itself is genius and the dialogue is marvellous, with so much intelligence and interest imbued in every scene. The acting matches the quality of the material with every main part being played perfectly. Michael Sheard as Laurence Scarman is a particularly interesting, endearing and wonderfully acted part whilst that character is also used to bring out some great insight into The Doctor himself. The dark side of The Doctor is explored fully in this story and light is shed on how he balances care for individuals with an ability to weigh up the 'bigger picture' of what is at stake. There are superb character based scenes across all 4 episodes. There is also a chilling and imagination capturing scene when The Doctor goes forward to 1980 to show Sarah what the Earth will be like if they left without stopping Sutekh. This scene is to prove that Sarah's knowledge (and the audiences) that the world was not destroyed in 1911 is based on facts that can change depending on their actions or lack of action. A scene of massive importance in bedding the whole series in some logical context. Another incredibly good aspect in this story is the exposition. Never in any TV show have motives, actions and events been so effectively and intelligently explained whilst still keeping you entirely captured within the drama.

Tom Baker and Elisabeth Sladen are perfection and the whole adventure is enthralling in every way. This is a real front-runner to be the best story of all time and it is set within series 13, a contender for best series ever.


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